HEAVY SHELLING HITS RWANDAN CAPITAL Army and rebel gunners waged a fierce duel in Rwanda's capital yesterday, pounding the center of Kigali and the airport with intense mortar fire. All UN efforts to arrange a cease-fire between the Hutu-run government Army and the mostly Tutsi rebel Rwandan Patriotic Front have been unsuccessful. The British-based aid group Oxfam said the month-long slaughter in Rwanda may be the world's worst since Cambodia in the 1970s. At least 100,000 Rwandans have been killed since Rwanda's president, a member of the majority Hutu ethnic group, died in a mysterious plane crash April 6. UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali has said the death toll may approach 200,000 out of a population of 8.5 million. Clinton defends policy

President Clinton (below) says the United States cannot solve the world's problems, but ``we will not hesitate to act alone'' when vital interests are at stake. He defended his foreign policy against suggestions that he has been indecisive, particularly on Bosnia. But he conceded in a 90-minute internationally televised appearance on CNN's ``Global Forum'' Tuesday night that ``the problems are more difficult than I thought.'' North Korea says no to UN

North Korea again rebuffed efforts by the United Nations to determine whether that nation is making nuclear weapons and said yesterday that inspection of its spent nuclear fuel rods can ``never be allowed.'' A UN nuclear watchdog agency wants to inspect the fuel rods to determine if plutonium might have been diverted, perhaps to make nuclear weapons. Armenia vs. Azerbaijan

The six-year war between Christian Armenians and Muslim Azeris over the mountainous enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh appears to be intensifying. Fresh recruits from both sides of the conflict were being sent to the front this week even as Russia threw its political weight into a new effort to end the war on its southern flank. Hundreds have been killed and 50,000 left homeless in heavy fighting the last three weeks, according to the International Committee of the Red Cross. Lashing sentence reduced

An American teenager convicted of vandalism will be lashed four times instead of six, but his father yesterday decried Singapore's refusal to spare him the ``barbaric punishment.'' Citing close relations with the United States, the government reduced Michael Fay's sentence, noting that President Clinton had commented on the case three separate times. US supports dollar

The Clinton administration, expressing concern about developments in international money markets, joined with other nations in a coordinated effort yesterday to prop up the value of the dollar. The actions by the US central bank coincided with efforts by the central banks of Germany, France, and other countries to buy dollars on foreign exchange markets in an effort to push up their value.

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